Step One - Introduction/Interview
At Hitch-Hiker Mfg., we work with you to develop every aspect of your custom concession trailer to make it meet your specific and individual needs. From the design style of artwork, to the flow of equipment layout and selection; we will work with you to design the concession trailer of your dreams. We’ll design a trailer made for attraction, production, and many years of durability. Are you going to the largest state fairs, or have a forty mile route of local festivals? Do you introduce new food ideas or stick to a family recipe that is generations old? Whatever your vision is and whatever your goals are, we need to know to help make them achievable. Whether the plan is to start a new venture, replace a unit for your current route, or you're ready to expand your routs with new and bigger events...
Your plan becomes our mission.
We cover all of these questions and more in order to design a custom food concession trailer that fits your aesthetic, style and needs. We will discuss options and pricing so we can deliver a realistic project. We'll then prepare a hand drawn pencil sketch of the floor plan, showing equipment, placement, and work flow. Creating a pencil sketch is still the most efficient and fluid method to explore options in these initial steps. All equipment is noted with manufacture and model numbers. This sketch and the above discussions then allow us to produce a very accurate and itemized price quote. Typically, these are emailed to you for review and discussion.
Timeframe: 1-7 days
Step Two - Sketch and Quote Review / Booking Deposit
Upon your receipt of the sketch and quote, discussions will continue and adjustments made to both the sketch and quote reflecting changes. These discussions are most often done with a phone call or two and emails, whatever is convenient. Often, at this stage, customers will choose to visit our facility, meet with us first hand and get a plant tour.
At this point, We will require a $10,000 booking deposit that is applied to the total price of your Project. Afterwords we will begin AutoCad scale drawings, conceptual designs and most importantly assigns a starting production date and estimated completion date to your project.
Step Three - Conceptual Design
Once we discuss the particulars of your project, we will produce a scale, detailed, AutoCad floor plan based from the previous sketched drawings. This will show how much room you have to work with inside the unit. We’ll also begin discussing colors, graphics, and get our artist introduced into this project to produce a pencil sketch rendering for the outside look of your trailer. We’ll also call out specific design elements that make this trailer distinctively yours.
Modifications and adjustments can be made at this time. This is where you can visualize the completed trailer and make design changes before production actually begins. We pride ourselves in the ability to work with our customers. Even after production is started, if a change is needed or wanted, and if it is possible for us to implement the change, we are here to accommodate.
Timeframe: 1 - 2 weeks
Step Four - Sales Contract / Production Deposit
Once you have approved the conceptual designs involving equipment, layout and pricing, we'll prepare a sales contract that outlines our payment policies, unit warranty and equipment package warranty. A signed contract and a thirty percent deposit is required before we start fabrication of any part of your project.
Deposit and payment standard policies.
Ten Thousand US dollars - Booking Deposit - Assigns production date consultation and conceptual designs.
30% of the total unit price - Production Deposit - Due 30 days prior to the start of unit production.
30% of the total unit price - Mid Production Deposit - Due after wall and roof framing stage of unit production.
Balance of total unit price - Final Payment - Due at unit completion and prior to unit pick up or shipment.
Now it’s time for us to get to work! We’ll make our initial order of materials and supplies, components will be ordered, fabrication will begin and we'll begin construction of your Hitch-Hiker trailer. Due to the custom nature of our projects, all deposits are non-refundable.
Timeframe: 1 - 3 weeks before scheduled production start date
Step Five - Unit Production
When building a new unit with Hitch-Hiker Mfg., we do our best to make it a fun and exciting experience! Once we start laying out materials, cutting, bending, welding and fabricating, we'll keep you included in the process with periodic phone call to keep you posted as well as sending progress photos to keep you updated with every major production step we go through.
Whether your home is across the state or across the country, as production questions arise, we are able to have phone discussions, share some specific photos, and discuss these areas almost as if we were both standing here in person.
Timeframe: 14-16 weeks total typical build time of trailer
Step Six - Artwork Development / Stage One
After having several conversations, we will have developed a better understanding for your likes and dislikes. We will have developed a concept pencil sketch to show basic ideas or concepts. You will also be asked about your wants for colors, image styles or preferences like photo images or illustrations, theme ideas, even custom logo design. Most often we will progress from the pencil concept sketch directly into the development of computer produced graphics. In some cases a hand drawn color mock up may be produced.
Timeframe: 1-2 weeks
Step Seven - Artwork Development / Stage Two
Just as we keep you updated with the trailer's building progress, we'll keep you updated on the stages of artwork development. Your feedback is highly encouraged through the process of your trailer build. Communicating any desired changes are easier before we move on from our earlier stages of design, which can also save you from what could be a costly change. We typically develop the roof marquee first, as it is the primary focal point and theme that the rest of the unit will follow. Once you approve the marquee graphics, we begin building and printing the marquee while our graphic artist goes directly to the creation of the trailers' lower body graphics. Of course, you get a chance to see every stage before we go to print and have input for upcoming stages.
Timeframe: 1-2 weeks
Step Eight - Artwork Development / Stage Three
Just as the trailer comes together one piece at a time, we'll compose your artwork using the same principles, making sure that every component is fitted and works well with the others. Small adjustments can be discussed and made on the fly, giving you a final product result that is second to none!
All artwork development is priced, created and licensed as single usage for the purpose of your trailer, unless otherwise discussed. If you supply photo images of your own food, you retain exclusive rights to the usage of those photos. If we develop a logo as part of the package that you would like to adopt and use elsewhere, that can be easily arranged.
Timeframe: 1-2 weeks
Step Nine - Unit Finalization
As with the entire assembly phase, the final touches will also be covered extensively with photos and posted to your private website. We prefer the owners to come, in person, to take final delivery, however, in the case you are not personally making the trip, this is a good method to review all the details of your new trailer.
Timeframe: 2-3 weeks
Step Ten - Customer Delivery
Completion! But it’s not over just yet. We’ll go over specifics using a check list of your new custom concession trailer (such as set up procedures, roof sign setup, leveling, power and water connections, equipment usage, tear down procedures and transportation readiness). We’ll provide you with a full delivery binder that contains all relevant documentation on installed equipment, component manufacturers’ warranties, MSO’s and service and maintenance manuals. Need to know torque settings for lug nuts? Need a phone number for an equipment manufacturer? It’s all here in a nice convenient binder. Of course, we’ll also be here for advice and service in times of need.
Final payment is also due at this time.
Timeframe: 1-2 days
Service Beyond Delivery...
After you have taken delivery of your new Hitch-Hiker Concession Trailer, we feel this is still just beginning of our relationship because we want to be here for any and all of your future needs as they arise. See, we proudly build more than quality concession trailers, we build long lasting partnerships with our customers within our small industry.
We invested in a new 6,000 square foot building in addition to our normal production facility that we use for unit finalization, and repair work.